Question about Acer Aspire 5050-3242 Notebook
I have an Acer with XP SP 2 and it's been fine until yesterday. I suspect I picked up a bug with a download, but I'm not sure.
Last night I encountered difficulty with a few applications but restarting the computer corrected most of those.
Today, I first got the message that Windows needed to close, but nothing else was affected. After a few messages of this sort, I restarted again and it seemed fine. But suddenly I got the blue screen with a message that was gone in a quarter-second, which means I couldn't read it.
The reboot process continually brought me back to the options screen, where I could choose SAFE MODE, SAFE WITH PROMPT, NETWORK, ETC.
I tried to restart with LAST KNOWN GOOD SETTINGS and went nowhere; in fact, none of the options allowed it to reboot completely. The blue screen always intervened and looped it back to the options screen.
I ran an XP Home edition disk and tried to run the Recovery Panel options, using DOS (chkdsk c: /r) to try to fix the problem. After five straight tests/fixes, the system came back very briefly but within minutes went to the blue screen loop once more.
I'm wondering if this is a worm, trojan horse, etc., or if one of the updates from Windows is corrupt?
I tend to think it's malware because one of the first problems I had was a redirection of internet addresses selected from a Google search page. I didn't think anything of it at the time, but I eventually found myself copying and pasting the url at the bottom of the entry to get to the site I wanted. This makes me think there's something screwy with one of the recent downloads I had. It was for a free game that required the installation of a toolbar, but the game sucked so I uninstalled the whole thing. I guess it's possible something in the download hid and didn't get cleaned out, right?
Anyway, I am afraid to install the Home edition for fear it will wipe out all my data, but I'm hoping there is a less-costly alternative to taking it to the computer shop.
I'm open to suggestion, though I can't access any information from the computer because I can't start up.
I also thought I would try to use my recovery disks but I don't know which of the 8 CDs has the XP program on it.
Thanks for any help you can offer,
You were on the right track by running recovery console. Try running fixboot and fixmbr like you did with chkdsk. These will attempt to repair the files that your system uses to boot the computer incase a virus happened to work it's way into one of those files.
Also, if you're able to get into Windows via Safe Mode, then you can change a setting so that the Blue Screen will not go away and you can copy the informaiton it contains, which will be very helpful.
To keep the blue screen by disabling automatic reboot:
Right click My Computer and go to properties. Go to the Advanced tab and under Startup and Recovery go to settings. Under system failure uncheck Automatically Restart.
Posted on Sep 05, 2008
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